Composer of the Day!

Today's Composer of the Day! is Tristan Murail.

(1947- )

Murail is a French-born composer who pioneered and developed the technique of spectralism.

The general idea is to use the entire overtone series as a basis for harmony as a substitute for traditional triadic-based music (which is, arguably, based on the same principles). In the 1970s, several (mostly) French composers sought this path as a way to have a new harmonic language without resorting to atonality.

He is also associated with computer/electronic music, spectral analysis (of varied methods), and IRCAM. He developed extensive techniques dealing with computer music that I do not understand. Here is a picture I do not pretend to understand, but is fun to look at:

His music is interesting! Sometimes it harps on a drone and explores the resulting overtones. Other times, it uses the same technique to create elaborate harmonies.

Here is an example of the former. The fractals in the video are also fun to look at!

Here is an example of the latter.

You should listen to his music.


Empiricus said...

I believe he's teaching at Columbia University, now, alongside Mr. GTTM.